Days before the Senate confirmed Justice Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court last year, Sen. Christopher Coons (D-Del.) asked the FBI to look into sexual misconduct allegations against the judge that were just made public this past weekend, multiple media outlets reported Monday.
The Washington Post and CNN both obtained Coons’ Oct. 2, 2018 letter requesting that the FBI conduct an “appropriate follow up” with an individual who’d approached Coons with new sexual misconduct allegations against Kavanaugh. Several women had already accused the judge of sexual assault.
The bureau didn’t take on Coon’s request in its investigation, and Kavanaugh was confirmed to the Supreme Court four days later.
A spokesman for Coons confirmed to the Post that the individual who contacted the senator, whose name was redacted in the letter, was Max Stier, a classmate of Kavanaugh’s whose allegation against him is relayed in a forthcoming book by New York Times reporters Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly.
According to an excerpt from the book that The New York Times published Saturday, Stier approached senators and the FBI with a story of Kavanaugh, then a freshman at Yale, pants down at a party while friends pushed his penis into the hands of a female student.
The Times corroborated the allegation with two people who communicated with Stier, but Stier himself declined to be interviewed for Pogrebin and Kelly’s book. The female student also declined to speak, and her friends said she didn’t recall the incident.
In his letter, Coons told FBI officials that “several individuals” had contacted his office wanting to share information with federal authorities but that they’d had “difficulty reaching anyone who will collect their information.” The letter is the first indication that a lawmaker had urged the FBI to look into Stier’s account.
The FBI has been criticized for the narrow scope of its investigation into Kavanaugh. Senate Democrats decried the limits on the investigation set by the White House last year, and dozens of potential witnesses who come forward to the FBI were reportedly not interviewed.
President Donald Trump, meanwhile, is going after the Times for reporting on Stier’s letter.
“The one who is actually being assaulted is Justice Kavanaugh - Assaulted by lies and Fake News!” he tweeted Monday. “This is all about the LameStream Media working with their partner, the Dems.”